Controversial call helps Whitecaps rally past 10-man Revolution

MillerRevs (Getty)


The New England Revolution looked like they had the Vancouver Whitecaps on the ropes. Leading 2-0 and dominating play, the Revs had the swagger of a team ready to run away with an impressive road victory.

That all changed in the 22nd minute when Kenny Miller went down in the penalty area, leading to a controversial call that turned the entire tide of the match.

Referee Juan Guzman issued a red card to Andrew Farrell for taking down Miller, though replays appeared to show little or no contact between Farrell and Miller, who appeared to trip over his own feet on the sequence.

Camilo Sanvezzo converted the ensuing penalty, sparking a Whitecaps surge as Vancouver scored three more unanswered goals on their way to a 4-3 victory at BC Place.

Goals from Miller and Jordan Harvey before halftime pushed the Whitecaps ahead before halftime. Miller pushed the lead to 4-2 with an incredible strike in the 68th minute after running onto a long pass from Sanvezzo and blasting a long-range shot past Bobby Shuttleworth.

The Revs fought gamely despite being a man down, and made things interesting in the 84th minute when Dimitry Imbongo raced onto a great pass from Darrius Barnes and slotted home New England’s third goal of the night.

The Revs threatened in stoppage time when Lee Nguyen sent a free kick at goal, but Brad Knighton made a crucial save on the kick to preserve the lead and victory.

Here are the match highlights:

What did you think of the match? Feel the red card was a bad call, or think the ref got it right? Impressed with Vancouver’s showing, or more impressed with how New England battled down a man?

Share your thoughts below.

  • divers suck

    I’m sorry, even playing down a man, NE was up 2 nil and still up 2-1 after the PK and still managed to get another goal….They should have taken at the very least a draw and possibly the full 3 points….


  • Ben

    Rowe impresses me every time I see him. Rev fans, will he ever be able to contribute to the Nats? Also Agudelo, so much talent, will he ever take all part of the game, from training to conditioning to the mentality seriously enough to make it at the higher levels?


  • CSD

    Good call thanks ref for not allowing this bad defending to go unpenalized. Hand on the lower back and simultaneous fall indicates leg contact from the defender from what I could see. That needs to be called every time. The thing that bothers me most about this call is that it is being called a controversy.

    Sorry I am not a fan of any team in the MLS so save me the you must be a Revs fan garbage. I like soccer and feel shabby defending should be penalized.


    • 10

      There was no foul. A very good argument could be made that Miller’s fall was a dive, as he tripped over his own feet. The reverse angle shows it pretty clearly.


      • Flacotex

        In watching that video, Miller was attempting a shot and his leg got clipped when the defender’s knee moved into it. Contact was initiated by the defender. It caused his leg to hit his plant leg and knocked him over.


    • Air Jordanz

      You do seem like a fan of being a d1ck. And you’re calling someone else “garbage”!?


  • Juan

    Poor call. PK yes, red card NO. That was purely accidental contact…he was trying to get around him and legs tangled… no intent


    • Chupacabra

      Intent is not a factor in the rules. It’s a commentator myth. No ref is a mind reader nor should be expected to be one.


    • glou

      chupa is right 100%. intent has no implication as to whether there is a foul. it drives me crazy when some of these former players-turn-commentator reveal such a poor understanding of the laws.


  • slowleftarm

    All I heard from Revs fans disputing Petke’s mediocre comment this week was how great the Revs defense was. Well four goals later looks like Mike was right.


    • Air Jordanz

      Seems like you didn’t bother watching the game of reading the article. It’s a lot easier to score on a team when one of their starting defenders is wrongfully given a red 15 minutes in and you have a man advantage for over an hour.

      I know I’m not the only person here getting tired of your bad attitude slowleftarm.


    • slowleftarm

      Considering this is the first post I’ve ever noticed from you on here, I’m not too concerned with your reactions to my posts.


  • Philip

    Nothing controversial about it. Miller was grabbed and the defender hit Miller’s foot with his knee as shown in the video posted earlier in the comments.


  • bizzy

    Vancouver got by on this one……New England is the business and are proving to be a huge force to be reckoned after acquiring Agudelo. With Agudelo, Lee Nyugen, Fagundez, Sene and Rowe completely in sync right now and firing on all cylinders they are playing some good, quality soccer. If not for the Red card the Whitecaps would have definitely been defeated, and I believe by a huge goal margin.


  • Bean

    Nothing controversial. The defender made contact, and Miller took advantage of that contact, and made a meal of it. Very, very standard operating procedure. Defenders know that contact from behind will almost always result in the attacker going down.


  • Charlie

    Sorry, no foul on Miller – am so tired of seeing players leap up after being touched. There is no way a player who is fouled would be propelled up into the air without “simulation”. The worst are players who would rather drag their feet than to just avoid a tackle and make a play.


  • Vman

    Would love to see a couple of more looks at that Farrell foul to see if there was any contact. In any case, if the ref deems that a foul, does he have to take out the red card there since Miller was breaking in 1 v 1 against the keeper or can he use his discretion to make it a yellow or no card at all? By the way, haven’t followed Miller’s career all that closely aside from reading about how he was one the league’s worst foreign signings in recent years. Still, those goals were top notch.


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